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Sleep, the one thing everyone does every day that most people know barely anything about. Humans have been asking questions about sleep since we could ask questions. It is such a puzzling phenomenon that scientist are just now starting to awaken its secrets. All we knew for thousands of years is that we needed it.
If we got this far without knowing about the mysteries of sleep then why do we need to know about it now? Well first off, we need to at least know what it does for us so that we give it the attention it deserves. Second off, we need to eradicate all of those outrageous myths about it. Last and most importantly on the second page of this article, we will explore the various ways to improve sleep performance.
Studying slumber is one of the easiest things to learn because we have plenty of opportunities to practice the techniques for better sleep. This article is full of information that is useful and easy to relate to. It will teach you what sleep actually is and the various elements of it. Improving the quality of sleep will help you in every area of your life for the rest of your life.
Benefits of Better Sleep
On the scale of importance good quality sleep is right behind eating, breathing, and drinking water. It influences every aspect of life. Kevin Loria, health and science writer from Business Insider has assembled a surprising list of 23 Incredible Benefits of Getting More Sleep.
Sleep Deprivation Effects
The alarming importance of sleep is most evident when looking at the symptoms of sleep deprivation. You may be sleep deprived and don’t even notice it because the most obvious sleep deprivation symptoms are only the tip of the iceberg. Sleep is a mechanism that affects the entire body. Healthline.com has created a great explanation of the effects of sleep deprivation as well as how it acts on the body.
Since sleep has been a mystery for so long people have made up many theories about it such as: how sleep cycles work, how much sleep we need, and the outlandish sleep disorder cures. In order to start getting better sleep, you need to stop believing in these sleep misconceptions. SleepJunkies.com a fantastic blog about sleep, has compiled a great list of The 33 Biggest Sleep Myths.
Definition of Sleep
Although we all do it sleep isn’t the same to everyone and has a very ambiguous definition. If you have a limited understanding of what sleep actually is and you are looking for a resource that defines it in simple terms I recommend checking out howsleepworks.com. This website does a great job of explaining sleep with a comprehensive definition and many articles that elaborate on its various components.
How Much Sleep Do I Need?
Finding the optimum amount of sleep is very important. Getting too much sleep is a bad thing causing you to feel as if you got no sleep or even give you a headache. The effects of sleep deprivation can be very dangerous. Finding the appropriate amount of sleep is generally based on age but is also influenced by several other factors. The Sleep Foundation, a highly acclaimed authority, has put together a panel of sleep science experts to answer this very question.
Types of Sleep Disorders
Millions of people suffer from sleep disorders and most of them don’t even know it. Sleep disorders can range from sleep apnea, shift work disorder, snoring, nightmares, and many other less obvious conditions. The National Sleep Foundation has provided a credible list of sleep disorders that can help you identify what it is, how it affects you, and how you can help yourself. It is important to address these problems because they can affect your overall well-being.
By far the most elusive aspect of sleep is dreaming. There is a lot of research that provides interesting insight on dreams, but ultimately they are very much a mystery. One thing that is wrongfully perpetuated is the interpretation of dreams. The interpretation of dreams has no real evidence to support them and should not be given any credence. Psychology Today has put together a useful list of articles about dreams that clear up this question and many more as they try to provide a better understanding of dreams.
If you want an in-depth understanding of sleep and how it relates to the body then I recommend this course from the University of Michigan powered by Coursera. Sleep: Neurobiology, Medicine, and Society is a great course that teaches the biology of sleep and how it affects the body. This course is recommended for those with a background in Biology and Physiology.
Continue reading to discover many more ways to get better sleep. On the next page we will explore good sleep habits, natural sleep remedies, sleep apps, and how to cure insomnia.